Atul’s Song A Day- A choice collection of Hindi Film & Non-Film Songs

Ho Tushima ri Tushima…aa gaya toofaan

Posted on: October 31, 2018

This article is written by Sadanand Kamath, a fellow enthusiast of Hindi movie music and a contributor to this blog. This article is meant to be posted in If this article appears in sites like and etc then it is piracy of the copyright content of and is a punishable offence under the existing laws.

Blog Day : 3757 Post No. : 14724

Sachin Dev Burman is, beyond doubt, the most sensitive instrument of musical inspiration – his soul is the very soul of music, the very soul of magic. Navketan ….is synonymous with Burman …whose songs are nesting places of whistling birds, tinkling bells and sobbing flutes….. A genius who has breathed music, dreamed music, lived music all his life.

This was a part of a signed note written in his own hand writing by Dev Anand, probably as a tribute to S D Burman. The entire note was reproduced in the book “The Navketan Story – Cinema Modern” by Sidharth Bhatia (2011).

Today, October 31st 2018 is 43rd Remembrance Day of Sachin Dev Burman (01/10/1906 – 31/10/1975), a legendary music director whose song compositions of 1950s through early 70s sound as young today as they did at the time of their creation. On S D Burman’s 112th birth anniversary on October 1st, 2018, I had set out in an article on this Blog, his journey from the Royal Tripura Family to the country side of the then East Bengal, to Calcutta (Kolkata) and finally to Bombay (Mumbai) to become one of the leading music directors of the golden period of Hindi film music.

When S D Burman landed in Mumbai in 1944, he had tough competition from well-established music directors like Anil Biswas, Naushad, Ghulam Haider, Khemchand Prakash and C Ramchandra. There were also emerging music directors in the mid-1940s like Sajjad Hussain, Husnlal-Bhagatram, Shyam Sundar, Hansraj Bahl etc. To some extent, his competition lessened with the migration of Ghulam Haider to Pakistan in 1948 and the sudden death of Khemchand Prakash in 1950. However, he had to face competition from new music directors – Shankar-Jaikishan, O P Nayyar. Madan Mohan, Roshan etc who operated concurrently with him.

There were some other handicaps with which S D Burman commenced his musical career. Apart from his poor knowledge of Hindi, S D Burman was said to have some personality traits which were not conducive for creating a successful filmy career. He gave an impression that he was whimsical, temperamental and stubborn. He lacked tact in handling his prospective customers (producers-directors). On the ‘plus’ side of his personality, as outlined by many who had worked with S D Burman, he was sagacious, humble, unbiased and had child-like innocence. Perhaps these qualities in him more than made up for his negative traits.

In Hindi film industry, in addition to talent, one also requires net-working with those who matters for picking up the music director for their films. He rarely attended filmy parties. He would not meet producer-directors or actors’ to seek work. He had very few friends and almost all of them were associated with Hindustani classical music or from Bengali music circle.

Despite all these handicaps and competitions from fellow music directors, I wonder as how could S D Burman maintain his position as one of the top music directors for as long as 24 years (1951-1975)? Let me analyse it based on 50 odd interviews of personality I have gone through who had closely worked with S D Burman and also of those who had known him.

For S D Burman, music was his world. Pandit Hari Prasad Chaurasia called him ‘Sangeet Sant’ (Saint of Music). Uttam Singh who was a violinist in S D Burman’s team of musicians and later a music director referred to him as ‘Rishi’ (Sage). Those who have closely worked with him had noticed that most of the time, he was in musical trance. Neeraj once observed that when Burman Dada was creating tunes for dance songs, he himself would dance to get a feel as to how a tune will fit on a dance song. Even among his few close friends, music was the only subject of his talk.

He was totally committed to song compositions under whatever the circumstances. Vijay Anand, in an interview taken by Piyush Sharma, had revealed that Burman Dada had composed some of the songs of ‘Guide’ (1965) from his hospital bed. He had personally gone to collect one of the tunes ‘piya tose naina laage re from the hospital bed. That he could conceive and create such a complex tunes ( 4 antaras in the song have different melodic treatments) even during illness speaks volume for his calibre as a music director. Waheeda Rahman had revealed that Burman Dada would tell her that he had conceived the tune with these dance steps in his mind so she should take care to do justice to them during the shooting. For ‘Tere Mere Sapne’ (1971), he had called Hema Malini to his home to explain the dance style of ta thai tat thai that thai ta. His good understanding of almost all aspects of song picturisation with his passion for perfection resulted in a very high percentage of his songs becoming hit.

S D Burman was never part of the rat race in the field of music direction in Bollywood. He would restrict the work of music direction to just 3-4 films a year. He had a phobia that if he took more films on hand, he may sound repetitive in his song composition. His style of composition required sufficient time to work on the songs to his full satisfaction. He would agree to compose songs for a film only after he had gone through the script of the film and the song sequences were fitting well in the story of the film.

There was an instance quoted by Pulak Bandopadhyay, who worked with S D Burman as lyricist for his non-film Bangla songs. He was present when this incidence happened. One day, a gentleman from the South film industry came to Burman Dada’s house and opened his brief case which was full of currency notes. He wanted to sign Burman Dada for his film. Burman Dada told the gentleman that he could show him as many bundles of currency notes as he had but he had no time to take up the new assignment.

After the gentleman had left disappointed, one of the persons in his room told Burman Dada that he should not have refused the film. He replied him by way of an idiomatic expression to make him understand. He compared film music as a draw-well. He said if one draws all the water from the well, it dries up. One needs to give the well sometime to recoup the water. [I have paraphrased here from the instance mentioned in ‘S D Burman – The World of His Music’ by Khagesh Dev Burman (Second Impression, 2016)].

Another important feature of S D Burman’s song compositions was that he was so particular about his melodic creations that he would not allow his singer’s voice and the lyrics to be over-shadowed by heavy orchestration. He used to tell his music arrangers that his melody was like a beautiful bride who did not need much ornamentation and dressing up. Another idiomatic expression he used to give in this regard was that orchestration was like a bindi (dot) on the forehead of a lady. A small bindi (dot) on the forehead of a beautiful lady would enhance her beauty. But a big bindi will spoil her beauty.

S D Burman was a strong believer in experimentation. Probably, this belief stemmed from his phobia that his songs may sound repetitive if he did not do something different. A sample of some non-film Bengali songs which he had composed in the 1930s and 40s itself gives an indication of his experimentation. Once in a conversation with Pandit Shiv Kumar Sharma, the Santoor player, Burman Dada said in his broken Hindi “main maar khaayega lekin main kuchh naya karega’’. What he meant was that he would continue to experiment with his songs and the music compositions even though his experiments may sometime fail. Let me list out at least a few of his experimentation:

1. I think, the first successful experimentation S D Burman carried was converting a ghazal into a club song tadbeer se bigdi huyi taqdeer bana le. This song became so famous that the film ‘Baazi’ (1951) became synonymous with this song. In ‘Funtoosh’ (1956), he once again converted a ghazal sounding lyrics into a light fun song, wo dekhen to unki inaayat.

2. In jaane kya toone kahi, a new musical instrument called Chinese Temple Blocks was used which created a mesmerising impact to match the mood in the song. The instrument was played by Kersi Lord, the Drummer and Accordionist in the S D Burman’s team of musicians. Another surprise was that S D Burman experimented by using Khol (a type of percussion) in this song which was essentially a naughty one. In Bengal and other North-Eastern States, the khol is used mainly for devotional and kirtan songs. In hothon mein aisi baat main daba ke chali aayi, S D Burman used a variety of percussion instruments of North-East Indian states and from Nepal and Myanmar numbering around 20.

3. Music Director Chitragupt used to tell his music director sons, Anand-Milind to study the songs composed by S D Burman especially the antara part of the songs where he sometimes experimented by composing in different metres than the mukhda metres. Anand gave an example of the song, choodi nahin ye mera dil hai which has antaras in different metres than mukhda. Even within antara, three out of 5 lines are again in different metres. The expertise of S D Burman in these types of songs is that the tune of antaras in different metres is brought close to the mukhda tune of the song like an aircraft making a smooth landing.

4. Poet Neeraj who started writing for S D Burman from ‘Prem Pujari’ (1970) also said that Burman Dada did a lot of experimentation with his song compositions. For instance, in phoolon ke rang se dil ki kalam se, Burman Dada started the song with antara. It was after 7 lines that the mukhda of 4 lines started. In dil aaj shaayar hai, there was no mukhda at all. For the song, yaaron neelaam karo susti, Burman Dada composed the first two lines based on a folk song, the next two lines were raag based tune, 5th and 6th lines were pop based tune and the last 4 lines which are the mukhda of the song were composed in qawwali style. Neeraj said that Burman Dada did these kinds of experimentation to break the monotony in the songs.

5. S D Burman was a fan of Ustad Faiyaz Khan of Agra Gharana. With his prior approval, he had used his famous bandish, ‘jhan jhan jhan jhan paayal baaje’ in Raag Nat Behag in composing non-film Bengali song ‘jhan jhan jhan jhan manjeera baaje’ (1937) which became very popular. He reused the tune with some improvisation in Hindi film ‘Buzdil’ (1951).

But in ‘Manzil’ (1960), S D Burman went a step ahead. He experimented with using Ustad Faiyaz Khan’s famous Dadra in Raag Bhairavi, ‘banaao batiyaan hato kaahe ko jhooti’ on Mehmood as arre hato kaahe ko jhooti banaao batiyaan in a light comical situation. He got Manna Dey to sing keeping in view the fact that he was singing for Mehmood in the role of Paanwala. When I first heard this song without the picturisation, I really felt that it was sung as a semi-classical song in the film as a part of the stage show. This song became very popular because it had the chord to connect with the masses.

Later, Roshan also adopted this experimentation successfully in laaga chunri mein daag chupaaun kaise and in phool gendwa na maaro. Both these semi-classical songs have been used in comical situations and sung by Manna Dey.

6. According to Uttam Singh, Violinist with S D Burman and R D Burman and later the music director, S D Burman is the only music director in Hindi film industry who has experimented with composing a classical dance song, piya tose naina laage re in Rupak Taal (7 beats) which is regarded as unusual for a dance song. He said that after this dance song, no other music director in Hindi film industry has attempted to compose a classical dance song in Rupak Taal.

I do not know much of the nuances of Hindustani classical music. On-line study material gave me some idea as to why Rupak Taal is unusual. All other Taals like Dadra Taal (6 beats), Kherwah (8 beats), Ek Taal (12 beats), Dhamar (14 beats), Teentaal (16 beats) etc have even number of beats. It is only the Rupak Taal which has uneven number of beats (7).

7. Shekhar Sen, the current Chairman of the Sangeet Natak Akadamy who is also a singer, lyricist, composer, playwright and musicologist, said that Burman Dada had experimented composing a Hindi film song on Merukhand style used in Hindustani classical music. Merukhand is an improvisation style recited in the 3-4 notes in sargam. For example, 4 notes, Sa Re Ga Ma can be sung in various combination in maximum of 24 patterns without repeating any note. Merukhand is used for vocal practice by those who have just completed training in Hindustani classical music.

The song in Merukhand which Shekhar Sen referred to was palkon ke peeche se kya kah daala. Getting a clue from this song, I guess, geet pehle bana thhaa yaa bani thhi ye sargam is also a Merukhand inspired song. Both these songs became popular.

Let me summarise as to how S D Burman could remain as one of the top music directors for as long as 24 years (1951-1975). First, he concentrated on the quality rather than quantity of song compositions by restricting his assignments to not more than 3-4 film in a year. Secondly, he chose mainly those genres of films for which he had a flavour for composing songs. Thirdly, he ensured that he worked with those directors who had been excellent in song picturisation. He was lucky to get directors like Guru Dutt, Raj Khosla, Vijay Anand, Bimal Roy and later Shakti Samanta and Hrishikesh Mukherjee. Fourthly, he did improvisation in his song compositions to make them acceptable to the masses. He also made experimentation in the song compositions to ensure that his songs did not become monotonous.

I will end my longish post on Burman Dada with a quote from Shekhar Sen. “Burman Dada’s song compositions were like lime pickle which became more tasty as years passed”.

On the occasion of 43rd Remembrance Day of S D Burman, I present one of the songs composed by him, ‘o tushima ri tushima..aa gaya toofaan’ from the film ‘Ye Gulistaan Hamaara’ (1972). The song is sung by Lata Mangeshkar on the lyrics of Anand Bakshi.

The tune of the song is based on a Nepali folk song which S D Burman’s Madal player, Ranjit Gazmer had once sang among his other musicians while relaxing during the rehearsal. S D Burman liked the tune and later used in this film with some improvisation.



In writing this article, I have relied on interviews which were given by those who had closely worked with/close association with S D Burman. They included producers-directors, actors, music directors, singers, lyricists, music arrangers, lead musicians and his close friends. Most of videos/audio interviews were taken by Moti Lalwani which he has uploaded on YT.



Song-Ho tushima ri tushima…aa gaya toofaan (Ye Gulistaan Hamaara)(1972) Singer-Lata, Lyrics-Anand Bakshi, MD-S D Burman


ho o o o
tushima aa aa

ho tushima ri tushima
ho tushima ri tushima
aaj jaane kis kaaran
haule haule doley mann
aaj jaane kis kaaran
haule haule doley mann
aa gaya toofaan
aa gaya toofaan
aa gaya toofaan
aa gaya toofaan
ho tushima ri tushima
ho tushima ri tushima

chhaayi masti basti basti
parvat parvat jhoomen
chhaayi masti
chhaayi masti basti-basti
parvat parvat jhoomen
yoon chale purvaai
ang ang leve angdaai
dharti chhuve aasmaan
aa gaya toofaan
aa gaya toofaan
aa gaya toofaan
ho tushima ri tushima
ho tushima ri tushima

thhanda paani chhoone se bhi
aag badan mein laage
thhanda paani
thhanda paani chhoone se bhi
aag badan mein laage
neend se joban jaaga
chupke se dhadkan laaga
mera manwa beimaan
aa gaya toofaan
aa gaya toofaan
aa gaya toofaan
ho tushima ri tushima
ho tushima ri tushima

maine dekha apna mukhda
maujon ke darpan mein
maine dekha
maine dekha apna mukhda
maujon ke darpan mein
mann se maine poochha
yeh hoon main yaa koi dooja
itni sundar main kahaan
aa gaya toofaan
aa gaya toofaan
aa gaya

3 Responses to "Ho Tushima ri Tushima…aa gaya toofaan"

very informative, points which make one revisit the songs mentioned. nice tribute to the “Sangeet Sant”
thank you Sadanandji




Sorry for late response. Thoroughly enjoyed & liked the write up. Though SDB is one of the greatest MD’s of HFM,, I got for the first time a deeper insight into his works, talent & traits.


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